Praying and Preparing for South Central Jurisdictional

October 24, 2022
  • The Fourteenth Session of the South Central Jurisdictional Conference of the United Methodist Church is slated for  October 31-November 5, 2022, in Houston, TX.
  • Every four years, the jurisdictional conferences meet to elect new bishops and select members of general boards and agencies.
  • Rev. Brady Whitton chairs the Louisiana delegation and shares more information about SCJ and what's expected.

From: Rev. Brady Whitton, First United Methodist Church of Baton Rouge
Chair, Louisiana Delegation

It’s been a long time coming!

While the South Central Jurisdictional (SCJ) Conference of the United Methodist Church has been postponed multiple times due to COVID-19, it will finally meet in Houston, TX, November 2-4.

The delegates elected at the Louisiana Annual Conference in 2019 will attend to represent Louisiana, and our primary task will be to elect bishops to serve the eleven conferences within the SCJ.

There are currently seven episcopal candidates in the SCJ, and our delegation has been hard at work interviewing and getting to know these candidates to make the best decision possible.

Learn More About the
SCJ Episcopal Candidates

Due to delays in meetings and other factors, several changes are headed our way.

First, bishops usually begin their assignments on September 1 following the July Jurisdictional Conference.

Following the November elections, all bishops will start their new assignments or reassignments on January 1, 2023. This includes newly elected bishops and active bishops like Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey, who currently serves as bishop of the Louisiana Conference.

Second, while there will be five vacancies in the SCJ due to retirements, the recommendation has been made to elect only three bishops.

This recommendation is both strategic and financial.

A recent article from UMNews explains the rationale.

This means that more than one episcopal area in the SCJ will need to share a bishop. This is akin to a two-point charge with local churches.

Each conference maintains its separate identity, boundaries, staff, and boards, but one bishop oversees both conferences.

The Jurisdictional Committee on the Episcopacy assigns bishops, which includes representatives from each annual conference.

Learn More About 2022
South Central Jurisidiction

There is little doubt that this is a challenging time for our beloved United Methodist Church.

I ask you to be in prayer for the Louisiana Delegation as we attend jurisdictional conference and make the best decisions we can for the good of the whole church.

Pray for the episcopal candidates, the bishops who will receive new assignments, and the conferences who will receive new bishops.

Pray for our annual conference, that we would turn any rocks into stepping stones and continue to be faithful in our mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

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